A GHOST IN THE CROWD
On Feb. 10, 2017, a white Nashville police officer fatally shot 31-year-old Jocques Clemmons, a black man, once in the hip and twice in the back, after he ran a stop sign. The officer was never charged, sparking outrage and protests for months. In December, while compiling its annual In Memoriam issue, Nashville Scene made a chilling discovery in its archives: an unpublished 2009 interview with Clemmons for a now-defunct feature called “Face in the Crowd.”
In the interview, which reportedly was never published, the then-23-year-old Clemmons, who was helping his grandparents at a farmers market that day, remarked on how he viewed the recent inauguration of Barack Obama as an example of Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream being fulfilled, talked about the minutiae of his young life, playing high school football, his favorite fast-food spot. He also shared an insight he’d learned: “A fool is as bad as his wisdom, so one thing I would teach,” he said, “use caution and judgment with everybody, and keep your head up and thank the Lord for everything.”
BUT IT’S JUST GAS
In a move that makes one wonder if New Mexico is trying to mimic Old Mexico, the state’s environmental department is taking heat over its proposed revision to the permit approval process for building oil and gas facilities. Weekly Alibi writes that environmentalists say the proposed regulations would “make the state’s air quality standards some of the worst in the country.”
The New Mexico Environmental Department defended the proposal, saying it combines two existing permit processes and removes outdated language. But environmentalists were having nunya, clapping back by reiterating criticisms of the oil and gas air quality standards, noting that it would eliminate any limit on methane gas releases and allowed only four days for public comment. To which the NMED was like, oh, jk, you can comment all month.
CRAFTING A CO-OP
Well, Worcester, Massachusetts might also be out of the running to give all their tax dollars to a billion—we mean, be the site of Amazon HQ2—but they’ve got something Northeast Florida ain’t got as far as we know: their very first community-owned brewery. Worcester Magazine reports that 3cross Brewing Company, which opened as a private company in 2014, announced on Jan. 9 it was converting to a cooperative ownership structure and becoming the state’s first community-owned brewery.
The brewery, which is changing its name to 3cross Fermentation Cooperative, will be owned by workers and consumers, the latter being sold memberships for a one-time fee of $150 starting Jan. 26. Thereafter, the business’s direction will be determined democratically—one vote/member. “From the outset,” said founder Dave Howland, “I really wanted 3cross to be very much a community-focused venture. Opening ownership to anyone in the community really reinforces that, I think.” We think so, too.
DISASTER EVERYWHERE HE WENT
Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton is one of the targets of activists determined to influence government by sharing their thoughts with their representatives. Well, Cotton prefers his constituents laudatory and docile, not critical and agitated. And he’s cotton-pickin’ going to do something about it!
The junior senator reportedly sent a letter to numerous citizens warning them to “cease and desist” all communications with his office, according to Arkansas Times. Several members of Ozark Indivisible were reportedly sent such letters, possibly due to their unwillingness to grin and bear Cotton’s tomfoolery, which includes denying anyone in the White House has evah used the word “shithole,” holding up a dying woman’s ambassadorial appointment to “inflict special pain” on then-President Barack Obama, undermining foreign policy by spearheading a letter from 47 senators to the Iranian government during negotiations for a nuclear deal, and screwing his own people by being the ONLY Arkansas House Republican to vote against a farm bill in 2014. He makes Marco Rubio sound like un hombre del pueblo (a man of the people).